What Sportsmen Need To Know About Global Climate Change

The Theodore Roosevelt Conservation Partnership announced that eight of the nation’s leading hunting and fishing membership organizations released Season’s End, a new report detailing the impacts of global warming and climate change on the habitat and distribution of fish and game in the United States, and implications for sustainable hunting and fishing. Sportsmen concerned about the future of hunting and fishing should read Seasons’ End at www.seasonsend.org, a Web site that keeps sportsmen up to date by posting ongoing studies of climate change, publishing current observations from the field, offering subscriptions to action alerts and providing tools for sharing knowledge about global warming.

The groups that contributed to Seasons’ End are Ducks Unlimited, Trout Unlimited, BASS/ESPN, Izaak Walton League of America, Association of Fish and Wildlife Agencies, Coastal Conservation Association, American Sportfishing Association, Pheasants Forever, and Wildlife Management Institute.

America’s sportsmen enjoy impressive opportunities for fishing and hunting because the conservation actions of the last century have delivered abundant and widely distributed populations of fish and game. But, global warming and climate trend now threaten the health and well-being of animals and their habitats. The geographic ranges of fish, wildlife and habitats we see today are likely to shift. Big game will have to adapt to changes in their forage base and alter their migration patterns. Changes in water quality and quantity will affect both saltwater and freshwater ecosystems and fisheries. Wetland losses predicted for the prairie pothole region will severely reduce waterfowl productivity in North America’s duck-breeding “factory.” Invasive species, parasites and disease-causing organisms may flourish in warmer temperatures, profoundly affecting habitat and challenging the survival of upland game birds.

Hunters and anglers are likely to be among the first to experience the impacts of climate change when their hunting and fishing opportunities in some of the fields, forests and waters where we have enjoyed past successes and great memories are lost. Some species may not exist in numbers that allow hunting, and seasons may be curtailed or dramatically changed in other ways. If fishing or hunting exists in the lifetime of our children and theirs, it may take on an entirely new face. How sportsmen address the challenges of global climate change now will dictate how much sporting opportunity future generations will continue to enjoy.

Theodore Roosevelt Conservation Partnership will keep sportsmen informed on Congressional actions and legislation on global climate change at www.trcp.org.

For more information, contact:
William Geer
Policy Initiatives Manager
Theodore Roosevelt Conservation Partnership
(406) 396-0909